Chicago’s Beer Boom: In Charts

on October 11, 2016

Hello brew crew!

I hope that you are all doing well as we slide into one of my favorite times of the year: sweater weather! With football, brats, pumpkins, applies, and hayrides, and comfortable, crisp weather, this is a great time to drink delicious beer.

Lucky for us, we are in the midst of a huge craft beer boom, with over 4,600 breweries now open in the United States. Not only does this apply to the country as a whole, but also to Chicago specifically. These new breweries are brewing some truly delicious brews, which we are incorporating more and more into our beer tours, and we’d love to have you come sample them with us! In the meantime, I took some time and compiled a couple charts that show these trends.

First, here are the number of new breweries that have opened per year since Chicago’s oldest surviving brewery, Goose Island, opened in 1988:

Number of New Breweries Per Year

Next, here are the total number of breweries brewing in Chicago in the same time frame:

Total Number of Chicago Breweries

Whoa! What a time to be alive!

Note the following:

  • These charts just reflect breweries opening in the city, although the suburban breweries follow the same trend.
  • Included are some contract brewers that do not brew in the city, but may in the future.
  • Note that breweries that opened and closed are not reflected in this chart.

In case you are interested, here is a list of breweries sorted by the year they opened:















Burnt City Brewing

We visit Burnt City on our Lakeview & Lincoln Park Beer Tour, and sometimes tour the facility in addition to sampling great beers.










If I missed anything, let me know and we’ll add or fix it.

We hope you have a great fall sampling these tasty brew!


Bruce and the CBE Family


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